SUPERGROUP VOL. 4 - Supergroup Vol. 4

Supergroup Vol. 4 - Supergroup Vol. 4

10 songs
32:17 minutes
***** ***


Honestly speaking, I have to admit that supergroups are never the sum of its part. Take for instance Sons Of Apollo, one of those progressive metal supergroups with musicians from Dream Theater, Mr. Big, Guns ĎN Roses, Yngwie Malmsteen,... All come from highly acclaimed bands, but when I saw them live a few weeks ago, I was appalled at how boring and above all self-indulgent they sounded together. I could namedrop some more of these supergroups, and believe me, you will always prefer their original bands.

And this brings us to Supergroup Vol. 4, a band consisting of musicians from such underdog indie bands like Bluet, When Skipjack Tripped and Throw That Beat In The Garbagecan!. They first got together in the mid-Nineties to release their first album Vol. 1. Ten years later, it was time for Vol. 2, and then they started working faster, because Vol. 3 came out in 2013, and now they are back with their fourth album, and they ironically added the Vol. 4 to their band name.

Itís obvious in the case of Supergroup Vol. 4 that they must share a similar view of so-called supergroup as mine. Of course, this trio is not an actual supergroup, but three friends who get together from time to time to record alternative Americana songs that make it hard to believe that the musicians are actually from NŁrnberg in Germany. Like in the past, the trio offers once again incredibly pleasant low-key numbers that range from the incredibly quiet to the more rhythmically oriented indie rock sound. The strange thing is that the new album starts with the quieter material. Answer is a quasi-instrumental mood setting piece with acoustic guitar, bass guitar and a mellotron part that sets you right in the middle of a desert, the kind of they certainly donít have in Central Germany. The following The Winner comes with a bit more rhythm but still counts as a ballad. The melody is breath taking, and some electronic whining later on gives the song quite the eerie feeling. Head On Wrong goes more into a rock direction, although in a rather subdued way, before The Devil Breaks His Heart is an alt country ballad that reminds me strongly of Lambchop. Repeat finally picks up the pace but still adheres loyally to the Americana sound. I Sing My Song is a laconic track that comes with just as laconic lyrics. If you have nothing to say, say it anyway, seems to be the motto here. This track also sports these cranky theremin sounds. Plastik Sandwitch, for what reason ever, even reminds me of Aerosmith, but in a good way. Everyone Goes and Clock Is Ticking are two further examples of prime songwriting, and especially the latter, although being a rather short track, comes with a memorable chorus. The album ends meditatively on the short The Secret Well.

This album is shorter than the bandís previous ones, but it also makes it therefore maybe more memorable, because the concise length helps to stick the songs to your head. Supergroup Vol. 4 are definitely not a supergroup, and therefore they donít sound as crap as most actual supergroups do. If you are looking for alternative Americana or country with an indie touch that encompasses everything from the Seventies (Big Star) over the Eighties (Giant Sand) to the Nineties (Lambchop), you should get your hands on this item. This band was founded in the Nineties, and they never take an influence from any decade thereafter. And why should they?, considering how well they master their craft.

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